Tiger Rag: More information you probably cannot use | ALL ABOARD

Given that 2010 is the Year of the Tiger, celebrated by the Chinese and others around the world, it only seems natural to honor the Tiger, symbol of boldness and brevity, as we share Five Important Things I Learned in 2010.

First and foremost, this information is not breaking news, nor breaking wind.

It is merely knowledge that I have obtained this calendar year, even if said knowledge was previously available.

Sometimes it takes awhile for the information to get to unincorporated, sewer-less Freeland.

I think I really learned about 37 things so far this year, but we only have room for five.

Aren’t you lucky!

Number One – Can you see the arrow in the Fed Ex logo? What arrow, you say?

A friend of mine who watches 60 Minutes told me, but I still could not see the arrow until I noticed a Fed Ex truck in my rear view mirror while backing up in the parking lot of the Freeland Library.

Why do I often have to go backwards to move forward intellectually?

Number Two – Remember the ’70s public service ad on keeping America beautiful with the Native American guy paddling the canoe? The handsome chief with the tear running down his cheek?

That fellow was Iron Eyes Cody, arguably the most recognized Native American actor other than Chief Dan George or Jay Silverheels as Tonto.

Volare! Iron Eyes was really Italian. Born Espera Oscar DeCorti, Iron Eyes shortened his name to Corti, before changing it again to Cody when he started working as an actor.

Who am I to judge Iron Eyes for his zeal to rise in Hollywood?

In the cult-de-sac classic Harry Monument, I attempted to portray a Chinese cook, Dan Dan Noodle, as well as a Japanese film director, Bobby Bamboo.

I’m still dreaming about take-out.

Number Three – Ever wonder how baseball great Jay Hanna “Dizzy” Dean got his nickname? While reading page 90 of Larry Tye’s wonderful biography, “Satchel: The Life and Times of an American Legend,” Tye describes in vivid detail the 1930s baseball-barnstorming days of Satchel and Dizzy, with this sidebar: “Dizzy earned his nickname in the Army, when a sergeant caught him flinging newly peeled potatoes at garbage can lids. ‘You dizzy SOB,’ the sergeant yelled in a voice loud enough for the rest of the regiment to hear and agree.”

Number Four – Ever hear how the community of Greenbank got its name?

While perusing the South Whidbey Historical Society’s website, click here, I discovered a 32-page historical summary of the names of our Island County communities. Greenbank was the name chosen for their slice of paradise by Seattle resident Calvin Phillips, whose boyhood home was Greenbank, Delaware.

Finally, number five on our hit parade — name the four state capitals that start with the same letter as the first letter of the state they represent.

If that doesn’t float your boat, try naming the four state capitals named after U.S. Presidents.

Yes, 2010, the Year of the Tiger, has been another bold year of great learning.

If only I could remember where I put my truck keys.